CHAIN: a call to helpful people

CHAIN – Contact, Help, Advice and Information Network – is an online mutual support network for people working in health and social care.  It gives people a simple and informal way of contacting each other to exchange ideas and share knowledge

Part 1 of this message is for CHAIN members; Part 2 is for people who are not currently CHAIN members (who will receive this message forwarded to them). Please read the part which applies to you.

Part 1) – Message for CHAIN members

Dear CHAIN Member,

One of the best things about CHAIN is the responsiveness of members to queries and requests for help. We put this down to the fact that because CHAIN members have voluntarily joined a mutual support community, they are predisposed to generosity with their knowledge and experience. Although we are pleased about this, there are still many people who have never heard of CHAIN and we are aware that we don’t have every helpful person as a member.  Many of you will have colleagues and contacts whom you know to very approachable and supportive, but who are not currently members of CHAIN (and may even be unaware of the network). These are exactly the sort of people whom we should like to encourage to join our network. If you can think of someone who has been helpful to you, or whom you know to be a supportive person with knowledge and/or experience that would be relevant to CHAIN members, please simply forward this message to them, and hopefully they will join us in our international online community. Thank you.


Part 2) – Invitation to join CHAIN

Dear Colleague,

You have received this message because one of your colleagues or work contacts considers you to be a naturally helpful person who has knowledge and/or experience that would be of interest to members of CHAIN, an informal, multi-professional mutual support network in the field of health & Social Care.

CHAIN, (standing for Contacts, Help, Advice & Information Network), originated 20 years ago in the NHS Research & Development programme in England and has since grown into a not-for profit international online community of over 16,000 people who are willing to share their knowledge and experience with each other. The community includes frontline healthcare practitioners from all professions, managers, educators, researchers and knowledge specialists (see the latest analysis of CHAIN membership). It is currently funded by a consortium of stakeholders including the National Institute for Health Research, Macmillan Cancer Support, Health Service Executive, NHS Leadership Academy and Alzheimer’s Society.  Sister networks exist in Canada, Australia, Scandinavia, Italy and Spain forming an international pool of tacit knowledge and mutual support for health care professionals.

Recent developments also include the establishment of facilitated sub-groups focusing on Parkinson’s Disease, Health Economics, Sustainability in health & social care,  Diabetes, Stroke, Frailty, Dementia, Anti-Microbial Resistance, Substance misuse & addictions, and Leadership.

Membership is entirely FREE and members of CHAIN get access to the network’s online directory, as well as receiving occasional messages which are targeted specifically to their individual interests. We would be delighted if you would join CHAIN, and if you do, experience tells us that you will almost certainly find the network to be valuable, as you will gain access to over 16,000 people from all professions, specialties and organisations who share your own willingness to be generous with knowledge and experience in pursuit of improving health and social care.

For further Information on CHAIN, (including an external evaluation published in BMJ), and an online joining form, go to  (Click on ‘Join’ for the membership form). 

We very much hope you will take up this invitation to join our network. In the meantime if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us (

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